- 14 Nov 05
Dolores O’Riordan is close to completing her debut solo album, which she describes as “the most personal record I’ve ever made.”
Talking exclusively to Hot Press in Dublin, the Cranberries singer reveals that the as-yet-untitled collection will emerge in late spring/early summer 2006 and be accompanied by a worldwide series of live shows.
“I’ve just finished a week’s worth of recording in Dublin’s Pulse Studios, which is the third or fourth session we’ve done,” she enthuses. “Other parts of it were recorded in LA, and Metalworks in Toronto. I’d start the songs off at home on piano and then bring a programmer to the house to take care of the Pro-Tools side of things. Once I had three or four songs like that I’d go into a bigger studio with my musicians.”
Who include ace Kilkenny drummer Graham Hopkins (My Little Funhouse, The Frames, Therapy?) and bassist Marco Mendoza (Ozzy, Whitesnake, Ted Nugent).
“Before you ask, no, I haven’t gone heavy metal,” Dolores laughs. “Graham I love for his energy and Marco, who’s been friends with my husband for 15 or 20 years, creates the most amazing sounds. He’s a Mexican dude, so he’s got that Latin rhythm thing going on as well as the rock. The main guitarist is Steve Demarchi, who used to do live session work with the Cranberries.”
It’s not just Dolores’ method of working that has changed since the Cranberries.
“There’s a very intricate and eerie song on it, ‘The Black Widow’, which is about watching my husband’s mum die of cancer,” she explains. “You might think, ‘Oh, that’s the same singer’, but otherwise it’s completely different to the Cranberries. Lyrically too, I wouldn’t have written something as dark and personal as that with the boys.
“There’s another one, ‘Letting Go’, which leaked on to the internet and made me realise how out of control this piracy thing’s got. The CDs encoded so you can trace it, but what’s the point when it’s already out there?”
In addition to finishing her album, Dolores is heading to Rome in December for the annual Vatican Christmas Concert.
“It’s my third concert and second Pope! There are about a thousand people on stage, including the Vatican Orchestra, so the vibe’s amazing. I tend to stick to the traditional Latin Gregorian songs I sang in school, but I imagine The Black-Eyed Peas, who are also on the bill this year, will dance things up a bit.”
Does Dolores think that the new Pontiff is as rock ‘n’ roll as the last one?
“John Paul used to work the crowd a bit whereas Benny’s only new in the gig,” she laughs again. “He probably needs a few lessons and a pair of shades for Bono!”